Monday, November 25, 2013

bleak, blustery, and baking

This is what Monday looks like in northern Illinois today.
Bare trees, gray skies, cold and windy.

 And did I mention snow? Yeah, that stuff too. It's mostly swirling around in
the air and not sticking to the ground, which is fine with me. That means
easier driving and no shoveling. Guess I shouldn't be shoveling anyway
with the shoulder injury. I had my second physical therapy appointment
today and it went well, though I'm a little sore right now. I also have yoga
class tonight, so we'll see how that goes. Oh - and this area in the photo below
is the entrance to my house. I repurposed these broken iron trellis archway
 pieces as vine trellises. If I'm in the mood, I'll wrap some little white lights
around them for Christmas.

 I made homemade cinnamon rolls on Saturday evening. Dangerous stuff!
I delivered a couple to one of Tim's nearby friends who was in the middle of
 writing a research paper, and I sent more to work with Brian today. Here they
on the second rising...

After they came out of the oven...

And after I frosted them too heavily while they were still warm...

1 cup warm milk (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2 eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup butter, melted
4-1/2 cups bread flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup white sugar
2-1/2 tsp. active dry yeast

Cinnamon-sugar mixture:
1 cup packed brown sugar
2-1/2 T. ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, softened

3 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/8 cup milk or cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Place ingredients in bread machine in the order listed in recipe. Select dough
cycle and press start. When cycle is finished, let the dough double in size in
the machine. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface; cover and let rest for 10
min. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon.
Roll dough into a 16x21" rectangle. Spread dough with the 1/3 cup softened
butter and sprinkle evenly with the brown sugar-cinnamon mixture. Roll dough
up jelly-roll style and cut into 12 rolls. Place rolls in a lightly greased 9x13
pan (I needed more than one pan); cover and let rise until nearly doubled,
about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F/200 C.
Bake rolls in preheated oven until golden brown, about 15 min. While rolls are
baking, make frosting: beat together the cream cheese, 1/4 cup butter, 
confectioners' sugar, milk or cream, and vanilla extract. Spread frosting
on warm rolls and try to eat just one! Fall into fat and sugar coma.

Happy Monday, everyone.


  1. Your cinnamon rolls look fantastic! Thank you for sharing the recipe. I wonder if you have the same storm we had this weekend? The weather reports said it would be "barreling" eastward and that it could hit the East Coast by Thanksgiving Day. Yikes, that's some powerful storm. Stay warm and enjoy the baking!

    1. I'm wearing my son's big, comfy hoodie over my shirt right now and am also wrapped in a blanket. Unfortunately, I have to leave the house again in a little bit to go to yoga. I need a car with heated seats. ;-)

  2. Uhh...Yumm!!! Sounds like a warm and cozy waytto enjoy the day. Hope that your shoulder mends fast.

    That storm is coming right at us!


    1. Sorry the snow and cold is coming your way. Stay warm!

  3. I didn't know anyone ever thought cinnamon rolls could have too much icing ;)

  4. Mind if I drive up,to your house and a cinnamon roll?!!! They look delicious. Sorry to hear that you are having problems with your shoulder.

    1. You are welcome here anytime, Susan! I had posted last week that I was diagnosed with rotator cuff impingement. A middle-aged wearing out the parts problem. ;-)

  5. I LOVE to bake and my family loves everything I bake, but I find that I no longer bake because none of us want the calories. The trouble is the rest of the family is disciplined, but I can't stop eating sweets. I am okay if I steer clear, but once I take a bite, it is all over. I would have finished off half of those cinnamon rolls.

    1. That's why I sent the rest of them to work with Brian!

  6. Melanie,
    You are so right! We were thinking the same thing and weren't our rolls so good with a steamy cup of coffee all snuggled up and cozy too! I use to have a bread machine,hum....where oh where did it go!

    Stay warm, and hopefully your shoulder will feel better:)

    1. I've had this bread machine for many years - and I had bought it refurbished! So glad it's lasted this long, though I don't use it too often.

  7. Nothing smells better than cinnamon rolls baking! And homemade ones, m goodness!

  8. Melanie! Why do you do this to me?! My sweet tooth is aching for these delicious cinnamon rolls of yours! I LOVE cinnamon infused baked goodies and yours look decadently divine! Unfortunately, I don't own a bread machine, but I make a version with ready made puff pastry and they're not too bad...very quick and tasty!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, including your mother and your aunt!


  9. That little entrance vignette is really pretty with the snow. I hope you do white lights and perhaps a urn on the plant stand with winter greenery...Happy Thanksgiving hon!


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